Almonds are a nutrient-rich food, providing significant amounts of protein, fiber, riboflavin, vitamin E, magnesium, phosphorus, copper and manganese. Thankfully, you don't have to give them up if you're trying to lose some belly fat. As long as you don't overdo it with huge portions, they aren't likely to cause weight gain. People following a weight-loss diet including nuts tend to lose more weight than those who avoid nuts, according to a study published in the "Journal of Nutrition" in September 2008, perhaps because the nuts are so filling.
A diet higher in protein tends to be more filling than a typical weight-loss diet, according to an article published in the "American Journal of Clinical Nutrition" in July 2005. Almonds have about 5.9 grams of protein per ounce. This is more than 10 percent of the 54 grams of protein per day needed by a sedentary person who weighs 150 pounds.
Although almonds are high in fat, with about 14 grams per ounce, or 22 percent of the daily value, only 1.1 grams come from saturated fat. Much of the fat consists of healthy monounsaturated fat. This fat actually may be helpful during weight loss, according to a study published in 2003 in the "International Journal of Obesity," which found that people following a low-calorie diet with almonds replacing some of the complex carbohydrates lost more weight. Monounsaturated fat is also helpful for reducing belly fat, helping to redistribute fat to other parts of the body, according to a study published in "Diabetes Care" in July 2007.
Eating a diet high in fiber may help you lose weight and thus belly fat, according to an article published in "Nutrition" in March 2005. The fiber helps you feel fuller and may also lead you absorb fewer calories from your food. Almonds provide about 3.5 grams of fiber per ounce, or 14 percent of the DV for fiber.
Almonds by themselves won't cause you to either gain or lose belly fat. Weight gain or loss all comes down to calories. If you eat too many calories, you'll gain weight, but if you eat fewer calories than you burn through your daily activities, you'll lose weight. Replacing calories from other, less healthy foods with those from almonds may help you eat fewer calories overall and limit belly fat.
- Health-Alicious-Ness.com: Nutrition Facts Comparison Tool
- Nutrition: Dietary Fiber and Body Weight
- Journal of Nutrition: Impact of Peanuts and Tree Nuts on Body Weight and Healthy Weight Loss in Adults
- International Journal of Obesity: Almonds Vs Complex Carbohydrates in a Weight Reduction Program
- American Journal of Clinical Nutrition: The Satiating Power of Protein — A Key to Obesity Prevention?
- Diabetes Care: Monounsaturated Fat–Rich Diet Prevents Central Body Fat Distribution and Decreases Postprandial Adiponectin Expression Induced by a Carbohydrate-Rich Diet in Insulin-Resistant Subjects
- University of California, Los Angeles: Protein